On Friday, Dec. 19, the House, then the Senate, are expected to hold final votes on the FY2016 Omnibus spending package, which includes an effectively-permanent, 75-year renewal of the World Trade Center Health Program and a five-year renewal of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. The Omnibus will be paired with a large package of tax cuts and credits that was approved today by the House.
A House floor vote on the Omnibus is expected Friday morning, and this afternoon Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced an agreement that will allow the Senate to quickly call up and pass the combined measure after the House vote.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) said today in a release, “A large part of building a more prosperous and confident America is taking care of those who serve our country—and politics should never interfere with doing the right thing. When we say ‘never forget,’ we mean it.” Following a well-attended November press conference by IAVA and others on Capitol Hill, Speaker Ryan promised to reauthorize the health program by the end of the year.
IAVA fought hard along with 9/11 First Responders and our friends on Capitol Hill to include the Zadroga Act language in the measure. The IAVA Team visited many Congressional offices and made email contact with all. More than 4,000 letters were sent by IAVA members to Congress in support of Zadroga.
IAVA has been invited to participate in a Friday Capitol Hill press conference alongside Congressional bill cosponsors and 9/11 First Responders to discuss the Zadroga agreement (and hopefully passage by then) and a separate press event in New York City on Saturday.
How you can help: IAVA has set up a “Take Action” web page, to be updated daily, for our veterans and supporters to ask their Members of Congress to support the bill. The page, iava.org/zadroga, lists all current cosponsors of the measure. If your representatives in DC aren’t yet on the bill, click here to email your members of Congress.